Music sessions support dementia sufferers by stimulating senses and sparking old memories


Music sessions funded by Sheffield Hospitals Charity are helping to support the care of people living with dementia by stimulating senses and sparking old memories.

The Arts in Health team at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust run a monthly programme of music concerts delivered by professional musicians at Lost Chord, Music in Hospitals and Brightside Music CIC.

The trio of organisations are dedicated to improving the quality of life and well-being of patients, especially those living with dementia and cancer, through music.

Thanks to funding awarded by Sheffield Hospitals Charity, the music sessions are programmed for ten different wards at the city’s adult hospitals, encouraging patients to sign, clap and dance along with providing positive social interaction.

Mir Jansen, Arts Coordinator at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, said “The musicians actively use music to increase patients’ general awareness and stimulate their long term memory.

“There is now robust evidence that patients experience an ‘awakening’ through music and song. Not only is this a joyful experience for patients, it is also tremendously meaningful for relatives and carers who often join in during their visits.

“It is often the ‘extras’ that people remember about their hospital visits and thanks to charitable funding, we are pleased to continue to bring a positive experience for people to associate with their time at Sheffield Teaching Hospitals.”

Lost Chord specialises in bringing music to patients with dementia. Patients and staff at Weston Park Hospital have also benefitted from Sheffield Hospital Charity’s funding, with Brightside Music performing twice a month sessions with ukulele, clarinet, violin and song.

“Music can be emotional, people love it and it creates happiness. Having talented, experienced musicians creates an uplifting atmosphere for the wards, for patients, visitors and staff to enjoy.”

“Music has a very positive effect on patients that often lasts beyond the time of the music session. It can leave truly positive memories and we are very grateful to Sheffield Hospitals Charity for their continued support,” Mir added.

To donate to Music in Health sessions, visit, email or phone 0114 226 7351.